Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in America, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As many as 50% of adults over the age of 30 display early-stage gum disease, better known as gingivitis.
Fortunately, gingivitis is easy to reverse, and our team at Union Square Dental can help. As periodontal disease specialists, we can give you the added attention you need to augment your home care oral routine. You can take these steps to reverse early-stage gum disease.
The basics of gum disease
An inflammatory oral health condition, gum disease represents an infection in and under your gum tissue. Typically stemming from gaps in your oral care routine, gingivitis stems from the buildup of dental plaque, a sticky residue of food particles and bacteria that use these as a food source.
When plaque remains on your teeth, it hardens into tartar, a stubborn substance that can’t simply be brushed away. You’ll need a dental cleaning to banish tartar. Even a small amount of tartar can set the stage for early gum disease.
Mild gingivitis can easily progress into advanced gum disease. This chronic and irreversible condition erodes healthy gum tissues, potentially destroying tooth structures and undermining your oral health.
Symptoms of gingivitis
All cases of periodontitis, the severe stage of gum disease, start out as gingivitis. You can often reverse gingivitis if you take the right approach. Take action when you recognize these signs:
- Swollen or puffy gum tissue
- Tenderness or pain when you brush
- Gum tissue is red, darker than its normal pink color
- Bleeding when you brush or floss
Another common sign of gingivitis is persistent bad breath. You may also notice that swollen gum tissue pulls away from your teeth with this early-stage periodontitis.
Leaving gingivitis untreated starts the cycle toward more serious gum disease. Advanced symptoms include:
- Gum sensitivity
- Pockets forming between teeth and gums
- Persistent mouth odor or foul breath
- Continuous aches or pain, particularly when chewing
- Loose teeth
Once past the gingivitis stage, gum disease is a chronic condition that must be managed by our dentists.
You can stop gingivitis with a professional dental exam and cleaning. Combined with consistent and attentive daily brushing and flossing, you can usually keep gum disease at bay. Some people, however, are more prone to this oral infection than others. Speak with our dental professionals if gingivitis frequently recurs.
During your dental cleaning, we remove all traces of plaque, tartar, and bacteria by using special instruments designed for these purposes. More advanced gum disease requires a technique called scaling and root planing.
Early-stage gum disease is a warning phase, and with prompt and detailed attention, you can turn your oral health around. At Union Square Dental, we’re your partners, protecting you against gum disease. Call our Flatiron, New York office at 212-675-7877 to set up your appointment with our professionals today.